Coyotes in Winnetka
Some residents have expressed concerns about coyote sightings in Winnetka. While this may be shocking to some, it is not unusual anywhere in the Chicago Metropolitan area, according to State and local wildlife experts. Widespread development may have resulted in a temporary loss of natural habitat for coyotes, but it has actually resulted in more food for them.
Coyotes are typically found in brushy areas, wooded edges and open grasses, but they have adapted extremely well to living in the "urban wilderness" as well. They like to travel along paths, trails and waterways. They are most active from dusk until dawn, but may be seen during the day, especially in the summer when they are raising their litter of pups.
The Winnetka Police Department has been contacted by residents who wanted information on the threat that coyotes may pose to their pets and young children. According to the Illinois Department of Natural Resources statistics, coyote attacks against humans are rare. Their statistics show that there have been only 16 cases of coyotes attacking humans in a 30 year period. This usually occurs when people try to hand feed the coyotes. According to the IDNR, the number one rule is NEVER FEED COYOTES.
Feeding coyotes completely breaks down their natural fear of humans, and can cause them to become unusually aggressive. In order to avoid coyotes viewing humans as a food source at all, experts recommend securing garbage cans so coyotes don’t become regular visitors scavenging for scraps in the back yard. Bringing in dog or cat food in the evening also eliminates a potential food source. While coyotes can pose a threat to small cats and dogs, a simple solution is to keep dogs on a leash and bring cats in at night..
Feeding wildlife is feeding the food chain for coyotes. In order to minimize coyote encroachments on your property do not feed wildlife .
Some people are under the impression that aggressively trapping and killing coyotes will help to reduce their population. IDNR Biologist Bob Bluett states that trying to reduce and control the coyote population will not work, as the void created by an animal’s death will be filled within three to four weeks. The animals are also very smart and difficult to catch in a live trap. Mr. Bluett suggests that unless an animal has demonstrated aggressiveness toward a human or a domestic pet, the coyote should be left alone. In the event of aggressiveness, an Illinois Department of Natural Resources licensed trapper should be contacted to address the problem animal.
Indigenous wild animals in Winnetka will be handled within the guidelines of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources and U.S. Fish and Wildlife laws. If one of these animals has acted aggressively toward a person or has otherwise endangered the safety of a person, or attacked a domestic pet, the Police Department will contact one of the IDNR licensed trapping services for trapping and appropriate disposition of the animal. Residents are asked to call the Winnetka Police Department 911 Emergency Number to report animals meeting these criteria.
Do not feed any wild animals
Bring in pet food and water
Secure garbage cans
Keep pets on leashes
Do not approach a coyote
As long as humans do not threaten them or their pups, coyotes will be the first to run away
To read more about coyotes in Winnetka, click here. For more information on wildlife in Illinois, click here.
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Possible Cougar Sightings on the North Shore
The Winnetka Police Department is aware of recent reports made to The Glencoe Public Safety Department regarding possible sightings of a Cougar in the area. The Department is also aware that The Illinois Department of Natural Resources has had no confirmed sightings in our area. To read more about the possible Cougar sightings and Cougars in general, click here.
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Winnetka Police Department Does not Solicit Donations
Some residents report receiving calls for donations from the Winnetka Police Department. These calls are not from Winnetka employees, and the Winnetka Police Department does not benefit from these donations. For more detailed information, click here and then scroll down the page for information about "Police" telephone solicitations.
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Important Information About “Police” Telephone Solicitations
One issue that is continually brought to the attention of the Winnetka Police Department is fundraising attempts through telephone solicitation of residents and businesses. Many of these fundraisers will imply that the Winnetka Police Department in some way benefits from the donation. In fact, it does not.
The Winnetka Police Department does not authorize - nor does it want - any organization to solicit on its behalf. The Department is funded through municipal taxes and fees that are authorized and budgeted by the Village of Winnetka.
If a fundraiser states that he represents the Winnetka Police Department, they are being deceitful. You may notify the Winnetka Police Department so the incident can be documented. When reporting these solicitations, residents are asked to provide as much information as possible, including the name of the person calling, the name and address of the organization, and any telephone numbers provided. Illinois law requires paid fundraisers to identify themselves as such and to name the organization for which they are soliciting.
In some cases, organizations, such as the Illinois Association of Chiefs of Police, the Metropolitan Alliance of Police, and the Fraternal Order of Police, may, in fact, have members that are also members of the Winnetka Police Department. However, no one at the Winnetka Police Department has enlisted telemarketers to solicit funds on behalf of the Department. The decision to solicit funds through this type of telemarketing is being made by persons outside of our community.
The Winnetka Police Department receives no direct benefit from these solicitations, nor would it accept any. Some telemarketers may not only imply that they are the Winnetka Police, but they may also suggest that donating will somehow improve the donor’s service level. This could not be further from the truth. The Winnetka Police Department prides itself on the high level of service it provides to all of its customers.
Residents seeking to curb telephone solicitations may register their phone numbers on the National “Do Not Call Registry”. Click here to be taken to that site: https://www.donotcall.gov/.
To learn more about Illinois laws regarding charitable solicitations, you may also visit the Illinois Attorney General’s Office website at illinoisattorneygeneral.gov.
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Winnetka’s Hands-free Cell Phone Ordinance
Motorists are reminded that the Village of Winnetka has an ordinance prohibiting the use of hand-held cell phones. The law requires that cell phones only be used with a hands-free device or in a hands-free mode. The hand-held cell phone ban became effective February 1, 2007 and was enacted to promote safer driving in Winnetka. This law is applicableat all times throughout the legal boundaries of the Village.
For additional information on amendments to the Illinois Vehicle Code, please click here.
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Internet Safety Information for Parents
following web site provides internet safety
information for parents: www.isafe.org
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Safe Haven Act Update
The Illinois legislature has extended the timeframe a parent has to safely relinquish their newborn to a Safe Haven site to a full 30 days. All hospitals, police and fire stations, and sheriff offices are designated Safe Havens. If you have any questions, or want more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit this website: www.saveabandonedbabies.org.
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